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Save for quick intervention by higher authorities, relief materials from the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) meant for last year’s flood victims in Kogi State are currently being delivered to the Kogi State government for its ulterior motive.
The motive, according to insider sources in NEMA, is for the Kogi State government to rebrand the relief materials as if they are donations by the Yahaya Bello-led administration in the Confluence State to the victims of 2017 rainy season flood disaster.
According to a letter written to Governor Bello by the Director-General of NEMA, Mustapha Maihaja, dated December 5, 2017, and titled “Relief Materials To Persons Affected By Flood Disaster In Kogi State,” four categories of materials were approved for the state as “humanitarian relief assistance” by the Federal Government of Nigeria to alleviate the sufferings of the affected persons.
The categories are food items, non-food items, building materials and livelihood restoration tools.
The food items included 500 bags of rice, 200 bags of beans, 360 bags is maize, 300 cartons of 3-in-1 tea, 216 cartons of powdered milk, 216 cartons of Milo, 216 cartons of tin tomatoes, 144 kegs of vegetable oil, 144 kegs palm oil, 200 cartons of Indomie Noddles, and 50 bags of salt.
For the non-food items: 700 pieces of blanket, 1000 pieces of mosquito nets, 500 pieces of form mattresses, 100 cartons of bath soap, 100 cartons of Omo detergent, 500 pieces of Wax print, and 500 pieces of Guinea brocade.
Under building materials category, there were 600 bags of cement, 1000 bundles of roofing sheets, 100 packets of zinc nail, 1000 pieces of ceiling board, and 100 bags of 3-inches nail.
While the livelihood restoration tools included 50 pieces of sewing machines, 50 pieces of fishing nets strokes 9, and 50 pieces of water pumping machine for irrigation.
The NEMA DG’s letter expressly stated that “the materials listed above will be distributed and directed by officials of the Agency’s Operations Office in collaboration with Emergency Management Agency team.”
But a highly placed source in the agency has put a lie to the DG’s directive in the letter to the Kogi state governor, saying it was just a smokescreen as no NEMA official is allowed to be part of the distribution team.
According to the source, the plot was hatched by the Kogi State government with the connivance of the NEMA DG in order for the former to have a complete control of the relief materials and also turn around to present them the flood victims as Yahaya Bello’s intervention.
“Some relief items are leaving NEMA for Kogi state and the DG has refused staff to go for direct distribution so that the state government can use it (the materials) for politics.
“The first truck left on Monday (February 5, 2018) while the second truck is now loading and Hon. Comfort Alege is receiving the items on behalf of the Kogi state governor. In totality, eight trailers are expected to be delivered to Kogi State Government House,” the source confirmed.
Meanwhile, the Senator representing Kogi West in the Senate, Senator Dino Melaye, has reacted to the revelation on the planned hijack of the relief materials by the Kogi State government, threatening to report the NEMA DG to the Senate if he fails to do the right on the Kogi relief materials immediately.
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